Line Drawings

Out of everything I have done artistically, drawing is the medium I feel is my strongest and that I am most comfortable and confident in doing.
I though that doing some linear drawings would compliment my other work.
I hadn’t planned for my paintings of Rhea to be included in the end of year exhibit but they are being displayed which I am really pleased about and I produced some good quality line drawings to be displayed with them.

I decided to keep them as simple line drawings with added pressure at certain points where there may be more shadow. I decided not to use any shading but I kept in the construction lines that helped me get the correct proportions. I thought that this gave the drawings a more contemporary feel. The final drawings look very clean and I think this is because of the simplicity of the images.
I decided to draw several imaged of Rhea on one piece. It shows her in similar positions but from different angles.






I did a large scale drawing of Yvette which did not go as I had hoped and planned. I used this same image to create a linear drawing.
I am so happy with this outcome and prefer it so much more to my more detailed drawing which I did.
Again, I left in the construction lines and added pressure to my pencil where there would be more shadow.


Marvel, comics and fantasy art is what I have always been attracted to and I had a real urge to do some comic sketches but knew I couldn’t include this in my FMP exhibit work. I knew that I would not be able to include this drawing in my FMP work or for the exhibit but I absolutely loved drawing it and it was good experimentation as I did this one first. It looks so clean and it reminds of me of a tattoo stencil.


My dad Michael, has always been a fitness fanatic. When he was younger he competed in a bodybuilding competition. He had a professional picture taken for the event and I thought I would use it as part of my research.
Again, I knew I would not be able to include this as part of my FMP exhibit work, but it was good practice and I can use both this and wonder woman as reflection and research pieces for my sketchbook.

For all of these drawings I used a HB pencil. This is because the lead is not too soft and not too hard. It gives a nice clean finish and when used gently is easy to erase if need be. I used a ruler for the construction lines. The paper I used was really good, thick quality paper called……


Oil Painting

Oil Painting of Yvette for FMP

I stretched a large canvas which is 24 Inches across by 36.8 Inches. Once I had primed it and it was dry I penciled in a faint outline of Yvette to help me get the correct proportions when I began painting.
I chose an image of Yvette which I found the most interesting. It wasn’t a pose which particularly showed of her muscular physique but which I found would be more interesting to look at and not a classical looking pose.

I found the oil paints took a while to get used to as you have to use turps with them instead of water for acrylic paints which is what I am more adapted to. Considering the outcome I wanted, which was a more visually realistic look to my painting, oil was the best option as they are extremely good for blending as it takes a long time to dry, whereas acrylic dries very quickly and you can not get the same effect. I had planned to get the flesh painted in first. This was because of the contrast in colors with her body and her clothing and hair. I didn’t want to risk the colors mixing as I was working.

  Something which I should have done form the start was to match up the colors I was mixing directly with the photo I was looking at instead a matching it just visually without comparing.
I was really happy with how far I had come considering I had not used oils before. Her face was the part I found the hardest because I wanted it to be accurate and for Yvette to be recognizable in the image. I thought this was very important.
I began putting some colour in the background as I was working.

  The background in the photo was more of a grey-white color and I wanted something a bit more livelier. I started off with a light blue colour but thought straight away that it didn’t look roght. So then started putting a more pinky coloured tone into the background.

Yvette’s hair is black and shines when the light hits it. To give the effect that this was so in my painting I added blue tones which I think worked really well and I was happy with this. Towards the end when I was almost complete I also added white in certain areas to give the hair more tone and the idea of slight movement in it too.

 I wanted to see wha it looked like without any of the black and white tiles, but I was advised by Richard it would look better if ther floor was in so that it grounded Yvette instead  of her looking like a floating image in the middle of the canvas.

I had a talk with Richard about where I was up to and he gave me some useful advice.

He wasn’t too happy with the tones in the painting and I agreed after we had spoke. This is why it would have been important for me to match up the colors correctly as I was working to get a more accurately corresponding tone.
So Richard worked back into my painting to show me how I could improve it.

   I was slightly apprehensive at first as I thought my painting would look more like Richard’s work than my own. But Richard reassured me that once I worked back into it would look like my work. I was grateful for his input as it did improve my work and the outcome.

              I had a vision in my mind of what it would look like when I had finished. the floor which Yvette was standing on was a black and white tiled floor. Richard suggested putting the floor in completely whereas I had only pictured a small area of floor where Yvette was crouching.
However, I did put all the floor in which I found difficult and messy because the black oil painting kept mixing in with the white.

Because there was quite a large area of background to fill I decided to use acrylic as well as oil. This was both to save time and also to conserve the oil paints. However I am glad I did this because both paints actually worked fine together and gave me the look I wanted.

When I had completed my painting and stepped back to look at how it felt visually, I just wasn’t happy. I knew straight away this was because of the background. It took away from my main focus which was Yvette. I found the colors garish and quite immature really. I didn’t like the final outcome at all.
I spoke to Sally about how I felt and she very confidently advised me to redo the background. I am so glad I did.
I decided to go for a grey background and fade out the black and white tiles.

It improved the painting straight away and made you focus on Yvette and not all the different colors that were going on in the background. Also, thanks to Richard’s help and input, the skin tone is was much more improved. Hone I first started the skin tone was too red and peachy, whereas now it matches more accurately and is more realistic.

Painting Yvette

I had planned to complete 3 large scale oil paintings for my FMP of Yvette. I wanted to take the best images from the photos I took and produce the paintings from those images.
Unfortunately I was only able to produce one. I had not used oil paints before and was not very familiar with them. I came across some issues whilst I was painting and it took a lot longer than I  had anticipated.
I spoke to Richard about my concerns as I was really keen to get more oil paintings done. He reassured me that it was all about the quality of the work I was producing and not necasserily about the quantity. Keeping this in mind I focused on the one painting of Yvette to make sure it was a s good a quality as I could possibly make it.
Part of me was a bit disappointed that I only produced one are painting by the end. However, it was all good experience and learning and from that I can take away what I have learned and use this in future work which I may produce.

Drawing Yvette – A3 Cartridge Paper

Steve encouraged me to go straight into a large scale pencil drawing as I had done quite a lot of practice sketches in my sketch book. I felt quite confident in doing this. I wanted a good image of Yvette which I had taken.

d2 This is the image I decided on. I thought that it showed of her muscular physique well and was an interesting and unconventional pose.

Yvette is quite heavily tattooed. I made a choice not to include her tattoos. One of the reasons being time and that I wanted to concentrate more on the body instead of the tattoos. Also because this was my first large drawing I wanted to focus more on getting Yvette’s likeness and I didn’t want the tattoos to take away the focus from my drawing of Yvette.


As I got more into the drawing I noticed the paper which I was using really wasn’t suitable. Because I was doing a lot of shading and rubbing out to get the effect of light it was damaging the paper. After a while the paper just began looking dirty and grey and had a mottled effect from the paper being damaged.

I spoke to Richard and told him about the problems I was experiencing. He said that because I was using my fingers to blend the pencil this would also be contributing the damaging the paper. This is because of the natural oils that are on our skin and that it was effecting the paper when I used my fingers to blend. I did try and use my blending stick as much as I could instead of my fingers.

The blending stick is such a helpful tool and does give a really soft effect. Especially considering the effect I want which is that realistic look.


This is the final image of my sketch. Honestly, I am disappointed with the outcome of my sketch. This is mainly down to the paper which I used. I feel it just ruined the overall look of my drawing. It was quite frustrating as I really wanted it to look more photo realistic and I think that if I had used better quality paper instead I would have achieved this look.

But despite this outcome it was good trial and error and I have learned from this what not to do next time. I think I was about half way through my drawing when I realised the paper was getting too damaged for the image to ever really look how I wanted. However, instead of just leaving it as it was I wanted to finish it.

Both Steve and Richard gave me helpful advice regarding my work.
Richard encouraged me to use a wider range of pencil. I was used to using just a HB pencil along with my rubber and blender.
But after speaking to Richard I introduced even softer pencils to get the darker areas of the image even darker.

Sketchbook Work – Drawing








I took my favourite poses of Rhea from my collection of photographs which I had taken of her and used them to produce some drawings in my sketchbook.
I really enjoyed doing these and the paper in my sketchbook is perfect for sketches like these.
I find I can shade very easily and I can get the desired effect I’m looking for. I am really happy with these drawings and feel my technique has improved greatly.

I used a HB pencil. I blended the pencil using my finger and also my blending stick which gives a very smooth and even effect which is exactly what I want. I then use my rubber to highlight the much lighter areas.
From this I feel I can move out of my sketchbook and produce something on a bigger scale.

Sketching – Mike Leonard Inspired Work

For my FMP I would like to produce a collection of images which have been inspired by the work of Mike Leonard.

His work is just incredible and it is the composition he uses which I am most attracted to. The people in his photos are always doing something. They aren’t just rendered as being still and posing but they are in motion.
IMG_1214 This is one of my favourite paintings by Leonard. I like the soft colours he uses and that there is a lot of emotion emanating from the figure in his image. The detail is amazing and hyper realistic art is what I am attracted to the most.

After having a tutorial with Steve, we discussed another approach to my work. Steve said that he really likes my drawings and have I not considered sketches for my FMP instead of painting. I want my FMP to have an impact and I don’t know if sketches are as impactful as paintings.

Steve advised me to do some sketches in a similar style to Leonard to see what I thought.

For my first sketch I simply copied from a favourite piece from Mike Leonard’s collection and this is the image above.


Sketching above everything else is actually my favourite medium to use. I find it comes more natural to me than anything else. I feel more confident with a pencil than a paint brush. I feel I have developed a technique which works and that is effective.

So using techniques and skills which I have developed from doing the life art classes, I created a replica of this painting with a HB pencil. I started with the head to determine the proportions of the body as whole. I worked through the image and drew the figure out before I began shading.
I also use a blender. They really are so effective and also can be time saving too. I find that a blender gives a soft effect than just blending in pencil using my finger.

I also make sure I always use pencils that have rubbers on the end. I rub out pencil in certain areas so that it gives the effect of light.
Where the areas are much darker I put a lot pressure down to make the area darker and give the sense of shadow. I find that this also helps with giving the idea of realism. This is what I am wanting to achieve. Especially with using pencil.


I am really pleased with how this sketch has turned out.

I will now use my own visual references to create some more sketches and see how I feel about using this for my FMP instead of paints.

Painting Rhea

One of my classmates Rhea very kindly let me take photos of her whilst at college. We used one of the studios and one of colleges cameras.

I want to use as much of my own visual research as I can that I can recreate using paints or recreating through sketching.

Here are some of the images of Rhea I took at college:


The images above were some of my favourite because I like the unconventionality of them. It looks as though Rhea is about to get up from the floor. There is movement without any physical movement as such. And this is what I wanted.

I am very much inspired my Mike Leonard. His artwork is so visually realistic and the way he uses composition is what initially attracted me to his work. I want to create the idea of motion in my work much the same as Mike Leonard does in his work.

I decided to paint three images of Rhea on separate canvases.

The photos I used to interpret this were all of Rhea posing in a similar positions then it looked more like she was doing something in the image and not just posing. I don’t want that classical look to my work. I want a more contemporary feel to them and to give the viewer an image of movement even though there is no movement in real life.

rhea4 I wanted to use these sorts of positions as they werent just of a typical pose. I wanted them to be more unusual and give me a something more diverse to paint and draw from.

These three images together give the impression that Rhea is maybe in the middle of moving. Maybe she is getting up from the floor. The idea of motion is apparent.

So once I decided on the photos i wanted to use I began planning out the image onto canvas.
I used acrylic paint to create the three paintings.

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The thing I found the most difficult about this first painting was getting Rhea’s hair to look right. I think I was concentrating too much on it at one point and trying to get in as much detail as I could to make it look more believable when I don’t think that this was really important. The colours eventually seemed to come together and I was finally happy with the outcome.

I tried to get the back ground colours quite soft like in the photo and I think that this worked very well and complimented the main image.

I started doing the background about half a quarter of the way through as I actually assists in the overall painting. It helps with the main image when it comes to the colours you are using as it seems to neutralize everything.


Two of the three paintings I did were completed through half term at home. So the paints I used even though they were still acrylic were a different shade of colour slightly to the ones I use at college. So the tone of two of the paintings seem quite a lot different to the first, which is the one where you can see the top of Rhea’s head.


Here is all three together. I think as a set of three they have more of an impact and create the visual effect that I am wanting to produce.


Because of the lighting on the photos of Rhea is slightly different, this has obviously had an effect on the overall outcome of the paintings. Because of the skin tone, in respect, the person in the images could be different because of the contrast in colour. But this was down to the skin tone being affected by the lighting when I took the photos.

I did try and match the skin tone as best as I could when I was painting.